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University Bulletin
Graduate Degree Programs

Business Administration (BUSAD)


JAMES A. NEMES, Chancellor and Chief Academic Officer
School of Graduate Professional Studies
Penn State Great Valley
30 East Swedesford Road
Malvern, PA 19355-1443

KAREN DUHALA, Director of Management Programs
School of Graduate Professional Studies
Penn State Great Valley, Management Division

SAGNIKA SEN, Professor in Charge
School of Graduate Professional Studies
Penn State Great Valley, Management Division


Degree Conferred:



The Graduate Faculty


The Program

The Penn State Great Valley M.B.A. is a general business degree program emphasizing development of the planning and problem-solving skills crucial in middle and upper management in the public, private, and nonprofit sectors. Nearly all students are working professionals who bring a wealth of experience and knowledge to the classroom. Required research may be conducted in Penn State Great Valley's Library and Computer Center, which provide local research support as well as access to the library and computer resources of the entire Penn State system.

The M.B.A. program is geared toward the needs of part-time students who are employed full-time. Courses in the program, which are offered at Penn State Great Valley campus, Penn State Berks campus, and at the Navy Yard in Philadelphia, are scheduled for the convenience of adult learners, in the evening or on Saturday. Online and blended formats are also available.

Admission Requirements

Requirements listed here are in addition to the Graduate School requirements stated in the GENERAL INFORMATION section of the Graduate Bulletin. Applicants apply for admission to the program via the Graduate School application for admission.

Scores from the Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT) are required for admission. Applicants should have had at least one year of quantitative analysis or statistics.

Admission decisions are based on the quality of the applicant's credentials in relation to those of other applicants. Evaluation criteria include professional and academic accomplishments, GMAT scores, two recommendations, and a personal statement that provides indications of future academic and professional potential.

Application filing dates: Penn State Great Valley's M.B.A. program has a rolling admission policy. New students may start classes in fall, spring, or summer sessions.

Degree Requirements

Requirements listed here are in addition to requirements stated in the DEGREE REQUIREMENTS section of the Graduate Bulletin.

Prior to enrolling in M.B.A. program requirements, students entering the program are expected to meet preprogram requirements that build a foundation for quantitative analysis as described below.

Quantitative Skills Requirement: Prior to enrolling in their M.B.A. course work, students must demonstrate competence in quantitative skills. This requirement must be satisfied in one of two ways:

  1. Completion of two sequential undergraduate courses in applied statistics or one graduate introductory course in applied statistics at a regionally accredited institution of higher education with a minimum grade of B, within the seven years prior to being enrolled at Penn State Great Valley. Syllabi for the courses must be provided.


  1. Satisfactory completion of BUSAD 501 Statistical Analysis for Managerial Decision Making (3) at Penn State Great Valley. This requirement must be satisfied by the first semester or summer session of the student's matriculation prior to enrolling in M.B.A. degree courses, and completed with a grade of B or higher. Successful completion of this course will result in 3 graduate credits, but these credits will not count toward the degree requirements for the M.B.A. degree.

Students who need to take BUSAD 501 to fulfill the Quantitative Skills Requirements will be admitted on a one-year provisional basis.

A minimum of 45 credits of course work at the 400, 500, and 800 level is required, including 18 credits of Foundation Courses, 15 Credits of Essential Courses, 9 credits of Elective Courses, and a 3-credit Capstone Course. Students may petition to have up to 15 credits of the required Foundation Courses waived in accordance with the course exemption guidelines for the M.B.A. program, in which case the total credits required for the degree may be reduced in an equivalent manner, down to the base minimum of 30 credits. To be eligible for exemption from a single foundation course, students must have completed at least two equivalent undergraduate courses with a grade of B or higher, no more than seven years prior to admission to the M.B.A. program. At the Management Division Head's discretion, a competency exam may be required to receive certain course exemptions. Time limits may be waived by the M.B.A. program on the basis of post-graduate training or current and relevant work experience. If a waiver is not granted, students must complete all Foundation Courses prior to starting advanced course work.

All entering students are required to take MGMT 501; exemptions will not be granted.

Foundation Courses (18 credits) provide an overview of key business processes and functional areas of organizations. These are: MGMT 501 Behavioral Science in Business (3 cr.), ACCTG 511 Financial and Managerial Accounting (3 cr.), FIN 531 Financial Management (3 cr.), BUSAD 523 Prices and Markets (3 cr.), MKTG 500 Marketing Management (3 cr.), and OPMGT 510 Operations Management (3 cr.).

Essential Courses (15 credits) build necessary competencies for effective managerial practice, knowledge of key elements of contemporary business, and ethical decision making. They include one course in each of the following categories: Ethics, Global, Interpersonal Dynamics, Organizational and Industry Contexts, and Managing Technology. A list of courses that will satisfy these requirements is maintained by the program office.

Elective Courses (9 credits) provide an opportunity for students to pursue their interests and develop distinctive competencies by pursuing advanced courses offered or approved by the Management Division. A list of approved elective courses is maintained by the graduate program office.

Capstone Course (3 credits): All students must complete a Capstone course that provides students with an opportunity to strategically integrate and apply what they have learned in their course work. MGMT 571 Strategic Management (3 cr.) is the capstone course for the M.B.A.

Student Aid

There are a limited number of scholarships, fellowships, and graduate assistantships available. For more information on these, contact the Office of Student Aid at Penn State Great Valley. Students on graduate assistantships must adhere to the course load limits set forth in the Graduate Bulletin.

Most students work full-time and take classes part-time. In many cases, employers have a tuition-reimbursement plan paying for partial or full tuition. To find other options that may be available to you, contact the Office of Student Aid at Penn State Great Valley, 610-648-3311.


Graduate courses carry numbers from 500 to 699 and 800 to 899. Advanced undergraduate courses numbered between 400 and 499 may be used to meet some graduate degree requirements when taken by graduate students. Courses below the 400 level may not. A graduate student may register for or audit these courses in order to make up deficiencies or to fill in gaps in previous education but not to meet requirements for an advanced degree.

ACCOUNTING (ACCTG) course list



BUSINESS LAW (B LAW) course list

FINANCE (FIN) course list



LEADERSHIP (LEAD) course list

MANAGEMENT (MGMT) course list

MARKETING (MKTG) course list



Last Revised by the Department: Fall Semester 2016

Blue Sheet Item #: 45-04

Review Date: 01/10/2017

Faculty linked: 8/14/14



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